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29 Jun 2006 : Column 616Wcontinued
|Table 2: 2004-05 national reference costs data for non elective inpatient maternity HRGs|
|Interquartile range of costs|
|HRG code||HRG label||Number of finished consultant episodes (FCEs)cost||National average unit cost (£)||Lower quartile (£)||Upper quartile (£)||Number of bed days||Average length of stay (days||Number of data submissions|
| Source: 2004-05 Reference costs schedule NSRC4: NHS trust and primary care trust (PCT) combined/TELIP sheet.|
Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list the primary care trusts which are piloting the well-being programme in mental health; and if she will make a statement. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: The following organisations are piloting the well-being programme:
Coventry Primary Care Trust (PCT);
Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Trust;
Dorset Healthcare National Health Service Trust;
South London and The Maudsley NHS Trust;
East London and the City Mental Health Trust;
Leeds Mental Health Trust;
Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys Mental Health Trust; and
North Glamorgan NHS Trust.
Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care NHS Trust;
Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Trust; and
Barnet, Enfield and Haringey PCTs.
Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much has been contributed by the NHS to the well-being pilot programmes in improving mental health. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: The Department has made £7 million available to spearhead primary care trusts in 2006-07 and in 2007-08 to support the implementation of the Choosing Health commitments.
Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what measures she has put in place to ensure the safety of commercial cloth laundering services supplying NHS maternity wards with communally laundered cloth nappies for newborn babies; at what temperature these nappies are required to be washed; and whether NHS standards for laundry and infection control were met by the laundering services in 2005-06. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: Commercial cloth laundering services supplying national health service maternity wards with communally laundered cloth nappies for newborn babies must comply with HSG(95)18, a copy of which is available in the Library. The guidelines set a thermal disinfection wash cycle in which the water temperature has been raised to 65 degrees Celsius for not less than 10 minutes or to 71 degrees Celsius for not less than three minutes.
A hot wash cycle will destroy most vegetative bacteria and enteric viruses. However, water temperature is only one factor in the laundering process as the cleansing effect of the detergent and the dilution effect of the pre-wash, wash and rinse are also important.
Monitoring of laundry services is a local responsibility.
Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what action her Department (a) has taken and (b) plans to take to (i) assist people who are obese and (ii) encourage people to take action to reduce obesity; and if she will make a statement. 
Caroline Flint: The Choosing Health White paper, published in November 2004, committed the Government to a range of actions aimed at tackling obesity. Key components of our strategy to encourage people to choose a better diet include the introduction of front of pack labelling on processed foods and restricting promotion of foods high in fat, salt and sugar to children. Work is underway to increase levels of physical activity, particularly in schools through the school sports strategy, and the setting up of sports partnerships. The Department is currently working with stakeholders to develop a national obesity awareness campaign for launch in early 2007.
To assist people who are obese, general practitioners were sent an obesity care pathway and weight loss guide at the beginning of May. The care pathway is an interim measure pending publication of National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence guidance on the prevention and treatment of obesity which is due before the end of the year.
Michael Fabricant: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when she will reply to question (a) 73450 and (b) 73451 on the Staffordshire ambulance service tabled by the hon. Member for Lichfield on 22 May 2006. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: Answers were given on 14 June.
Angela Watkinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many patient advice and liaison service workers there are in each NHS trust in England; and what the average number of patients treated per year in each NHS trust in England was over the last five years. 
Ms Rosie Winterton:
Because of the local nature of the service, the Department does not keep central data
relating to patient advice and liaison service (PALS) operational activities, including the number of PALS workers in each national health service trust in England.
The following table summarises the number of patients treated per year by the NHS in England over the last five years, and is taken from the NHS annual report 2004-05.
| Note: Figures relate to thousands|
Angela Watkinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health in what ways the patient advice and liaison service informs cancer patients of its ability to act as a gateway to information and advice about welfare benefits. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: Because of the local nature of the service, the Department does not keep central data relating to patient advice and liaison service (PALS) operational activities. However, one of the core features of PALS is to be identifiable and accessible to patients, their carers, friends and families and strategic health authorities regularly evaluate PALS against this criterion.
Derek Wyatt: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many cases there have been of inaccurate (a) medication and (b) diagnosis following the outsourcing of patients' correspondence to non-EU countries; 
(2) what audit safeguards are in place to monitor the outsourcing of patient correspondence to non-EU countries; 
(3) how many hospitals in (a) England, (b) south-east England and (c) Kent have outsourced the typing of patients' correspondence to agencies outside the EU; 
(4) what target time has been agreed for the return of correspondence between consultants and general practitioners sent abroad for typing; and what procedures are in place in the event that the target is not met; 
(5) what steps have been taken to ensure the maintenance of patient confidentiality in respect of patients' notes outsourced to non-EU countries for typing. 
Caroline Flint [holding answers for UIN 80817, 80818 and 80819 27 June 2006]: Information is not held centrally on the number of national health service organisations which outsource the typing of patient correspondence and records to agencies outside of the European Union, nor on the accuracy of subsequent medication or diagnosis where this has been done.
NHS organisations are legally responsible for managing the health records of their patients and are required by data protection legislation, reinforced by guidance issued by the Department, to ensure the accuracy and confidentiality of information held within records. They are expected to take appropriate technical and organisational measures to ensure this is the case, including the specification of quality standards in contracts for outsourced services and the establishment of appropriate audit safeguards, but compliance remains a local responsibility. Target delivery times and other service performance standards are a matter for negotiation between parties. One of the many benefits of the national programme for information technology is that it will eliminate errors in the transcription of paper notes.
Mr. Hurd: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the priorities are of the Policy Research Programme within the Department. 
Andy Burnham: Priorities for the policy research programme (PRP) are determined primarily by the Departments strategic objectives and public service agreements. The PRP funds approximately 300 policy related research projects at any one time. Currently, these provide evidence to inform policy on:
health protection including antimicrobial resistance, healthcare acquired infections, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, infectious diseases;
health promotion including obesity, nutrition, tobacco, sexual health, drugs, alcohol, foetal alcohol syndrome;
specific disease areas such as coronary heart disease, stroke, and diabetes;
screening policy such as for cancer and hepatitis C;
policy for vulnerable or at risk groups such as child and maternal health, people with physical and learning disabilities, long-term conditions, mental health problems, and older people;
the health and social care work force.
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